Nancy Northcott-Interview and Giveaway with the Author

Nancy Northcott-Interview and Giveaway with the Author


Nancy Northcott has been a lover of comic books, science fiction, fantasy and romance since childhood. An attorney, she left that profession to teach at the college level and to write. Now, she combines her passion for romance and high stakes in RENEGADE, her first published novel and the first book in her contemporary mage series. She continues her story in GUARDIAN, which will be published in May 2013.

Nancy lives with her family in North Carolina.

TRC: Hi Nancy and welcome to The Reading Café. Congratulations on the release of RENEGADE.

Nancy:  Thank you, Sandy!  I’m delighted to be here.

TRC: We would like to start with some background information. Please tell us
something about yourself?

Nancy:  As a child, I loved fairy tales and mythology, and I’m sure those interests helped develop my imagination.  I discovered comic books at age seven.  Super-heroes seemed like another kind of wizard, I think.  My favorite series was THE LEGION OF SUPER-HEROES, which was set in the thirtieth century.  I loved their futuristic world, their powers, and their bone-deep camaraderie and dedication to justice.

At the same time, I was discovering historical romance, thanks to Disney’s WHEN KNIGHTHOOD WAS IN FLOWER and my grandmother’s collection of Inglis Fletcher novels. Fletcher wrote a series about North Carolina from its early colonization to just after the Revolutionary War.

We lived in a small town, and I could easily ride my bike to the library.  Our local librarian, Mrs. Wally, quickly figured out what would appeal to me, so I never had a shortage of suggested books.   I still love to read, and I enjoy a wide range of nonfiction as well as science fiction, fantasy, comic books, historical fiction, mysteries or thrillers, and, of course, pretty much every subgenre of romance.

TRC: Many authors, including yourself, developed an interest in writing at an early age. What was the catalyst that sparked your interest?

Nancy:  My grandfather and I used to draw stick figures and make up stories about them.  I’m not a very good artist, but I enjoy sketching with a pencil.  When I do, I always have a story in mind about the picture.

TRC: Whom do you credit as your biggest source of support and why?

Nancy:  My husband, without a doubt.  He has always encouraged me to pursue publication and never begrudged trying to trim the budget here or stretch it there to see if we could cover a brainstorming trip or a conference fee.  When our son was small, his dad also took him out of the house from time to time so I could have quiet to write.  I realize I’m lucky to be with someone so determined to see my dream realized.

TRC: What or who has been the biggest influence in your life?

Nancy:  My parents always encouraged me to try whatever interested me, and that was more valuable than I realized when I was growing up.  My mom was in the U. S. Navy during World War II, when military service was still an unconventional choice for a woman.  Life handed my dad, who was also in the navy, a series of pretty hard knocks before my parents met, and he set an example of perseverance that taught me a lot.

TRC: You have lived and travelled throughout the British countryside. Have you considered writing a novel or fictional series featuring some of the
places you have visited or lived?

Nancy:  Yes, I did, though I tend to love off-market time periods, like the Restoration (the reign of Charles II, 1660-1685) and medieval England.  I wrote three historical romances and one historical fantasy set in these periods. They did well on the contest circuit, with three of them finaling in RWA’s Golden Heart competition, but don’t really fit a traditional market niche.

TRC: RENEGADE is the first novel in your new Protectors series. Would you please tell us about the premise?

LINKS TO PRE-ORDER: Amazon / Barnes and Noble/ The Book Depository /

Nancy:  The tagline for RENEGADE is “She enforces the rules.  He breaks every one of them.  Now they are each other’s only hope.”

The heroine, Valeria Banning, is the top cop for the southeastern U.S. mages.  The hero is Griffin Dare, their most notorious outlaw.  After he saves her life, she agrees to listen to him but finds his claim that there’s a traitor inside the mages’ governing body difficult to believe.  Val investigates and finds enough to convince her Griff may be right. However, her investigation has alerted the wrong person, so she and Griff must flee for their lives.

TRC: Will we see Griffin and Valeria in future storylines?

Nancy:  Absolutely.  Each Protectors novel features a different couple, as I think we all expect in a romance, but Griff and Val will also appear.

TRC: What or who is the inspiration behind the series?

Nancy:  It’s hard to pin down any one thing. Although RENEGADE is set in our contemporary world, the mages have the same mutual loyalty and dedication that drew me to the Legion of Super-Heroes, and their culture owes a lot to my love of history and fantasy.

Romance, of course, is the most prominent thread in the story, but I also like movies and books with a lot of action and escalating stakes.  There can’t always be something blowing up, though, and my small-town upbringing contributed a lot to the imaginary town of Wayfarer, Georgia.

It’s probably fair to say the series has been influenced in some way by all the types of books I enjoy.

TRC: How many books do you have planned for the Protectors series?

Nancy:  At the moment, six, but series arcs have a way of evolving, so there may well be more.

TRC: If you could virtually cast the series, which actors or model would best represent the main characters?

Nancy:  Hmm.  I have to think about that one.  Many of the writers I know do virtual casting before they start writing, but I’ve never been one of them.  I tend to write the character and then see which famous faces might fit.  For Griff, a young Christopher Reeve (without the Superman hair) comes closest, and Val has the girl-next-door appeal of Mary McCormack from IN PLAIN SIGHT.

Actor Lucas Bryant of HAVEN is almost a perfect double for Stefan, the hero of GUARDIAN.  The actress who most resembles Mel, the heroine, is Kathleen Munroe, with her hair dark as it was on STARGATE UNIVERSE.

TRC: GUARDIAN is the May 2013 release for the Protectors series. Would you please tell us something about the premise? Who will be the main characters?

Nancy:  GUARDIAN revolves around mage physician Stefan Harper from RENEGADE and Camellia “Mel” Wray, the Mundane (or non-mage) FBI agent he once hoped to marry.  They meet again when a friend of hers is murdered and Stefan is called in to consult about a strange toxin in what’s left of the victim’s blood. Their old attraction quickly rekindles, but his secrets and her fears still stand in their way.

TRC: You are a member of the Romance Bandits. What and who are the Romance Bandits and how did you become involved?

Nancy:  The Romance Bandits are a blog group formed by some of RWA’s 2006 Golden Heart finalists.   There were eighteen original members, but I wasn’t one of them. I didn’t know most of the others and wasn’t sure what being part of something like this might involve.  After meeting several of them at a conference, I asked if I could join the group.  There are currently seventeen of us.  We talk about romance, books, movies, and life in general.

TRC: Many writers bounce ideas with family and friends. With whom do you bounce ideas?

Nancy:  I’m part of a brainstorming group that meets twice yearly.  If we need to wrestle with something in between, email is a great help.  For guy-specific questions, I talk to the two I live with.

TRC: Writer’s block is a very real phenomenon for many authors. How do you handle the stress and anxiety of writer’s block?

Nancy:  I have four main ways to cope.  One is to write something else that doesn’t matter, anything that will result in words flowing onto virtual paper.  Sometimes playing Tetris on our son’s old Nintendo 64 game console lets my subconscious work out the problem.   When all else fails, I clean the bathroom, which at least lets me feel virtuous for a while.

When something is due, though, producing words is imperative, so I sit down and write, even if I don’t much care for what’s coming out, on the assumption I can fix it later.  At least I then have something to fix.

TRC: Would you please tell us what you do in your spare time when you are not writing?

Nancy:  I enjoy reading, listening to music, or watching television or a movie.

TRC: On what are you currently working?

Nancy:  I’m doing revisions on PROTECTOR, a novella scheduled for March 2013, and GUARDIAN.

TRC: Would you like to add anything else?

Nancy:  PROTECTOR is about wildland firefighter Edie Lang and helicopter pilot Josh Campbell, who are both mages. They think their one-night stand three years ago wrote “The End” to their mutual attraction until they meet again while fighting a wildfire. Then they’re forced to admit they feel more than mere attraction, but they have differences that make them fear risking their hearts.

If I were casting Josh, I would choose Scott Speedman of the Underworld movies and Last Resort. For Edie, I’d pick Amy Carlson of Blue Bloods. The picture on her website is perfect for Edie.

Thank you very much for reviewing RENEGADE and for having me as a guest today, Sandy.  I appreciate the opportunity to chat about the book.

I’d also like to encourage anyone who is pursuing a dream to persevere.  I’ve been lucky in having a supportive family and finding a community of writers who encourage each other.  I think luck is always an element in success, and we have to keep trying until the lucky break arrives.


Favorite Food
Spaghetti with marinara sauce

Favorite Dessert

Favorite TV Show
Three-way tie:  Castle, White Collar, and Burn Notice

Favorite Movie
To Kill A Mockingbird

Last Movie You Saw
The Avengers

Dark or Milk Chocolate
Milk, definitely!

Do you have any pets?
Yes, a bossy golden retriever mix.

TRC: Thank you Nancy for taking the time to answer our questions. Congratulations on the release of RENEGADE. We wish you all the best.




Northcott Brings Romance, Suspense and the Paranormal to RENEGADE, the
First Book in her The Protectors Series

RENEGADE, the first novel in three time Golden Heart Award Finalist Nancy Northcott’s The Protectors series, introduces one of Collegium council’s top sheriffs, Valeria Banning, the mage council’s sheriff for the southeastern United States. Valeria doesn’t just take her job seriously, she takes it personally. So when Griffin Dare, a notorious fugitive sworn to protect innocent Mundanes and mages from dark magic, risks his life to save her, she has to wonder why. To find the answer, she’ll put everything on the line, starting with her heart.

Before Valeria can recover from the attack that almost killed her, evil forces are moving against them. Soon, they’re fighting side by side. What they are doing is forbidden, and when the council discovers they are working together, Valeria and Griffin must run for their lives, and not just from the law. Danger threatens at every turn as they try to prevent the advent of a ghoul takeover, and struggle to find the traitor they believe is betraying the Collegium and working with ghouls to send unsuspecting mages to their death.

You can follow Nancy at : Website / Twitter / Facebook





Nancy is offering a Keeper Kase and an ecopy (Kindle or Nook) of her new novel RENEGADE to one lucky member at The Reading Cafe.

1. You must be a registered member at The Reading Cafe. If you are not a member, please register using the log-in at the top of the page, or by using one of the social log-ins.

2. If you are using a social log-in such as Twitter, please post your email address along with a comment as Twitter does not allow for email addresses.

3. Giveaway open to USA and Canada only.

4. Giveaway runs from November 5-8, 2012


33 thoughts on “Nancy Northcott-Interview and Giveaway with the Author

  1. Wonderful interview, Nancy and Sandy. I think it’s great that your husband gives you support in your writing. I’m also amazed how many attorneys have become authors.
    Renegade sounds like a great start in this new series. Based on Sandy’s wonderful review, I just went to Amazon and pre-ordered your book for my Kindle.

    I love Castle too.

  2. Thank you, Barb! I hope you enjoy the book.

    I’ve also noticed that a great many RWA members are or used to be lawyers. Maybe writing is an escape from other people’s problems. At least in a book, the author controls the outcome and can be certain there will be a Happily Ever After.

    I’ll pass you kudos to the dh. I know he’ll appreciate your comment.

    • Or maybe the practice of law is much duller than what we see (and expect) from television? I always think how exciting the lawyer shows in movies and TV are, but the actual practice must be tedious at times.

      • LOL! It is certainly less exciting than on TV. Episodic television has to wrap up in an hour, but real life cases seldom have such clear resolutions. That’s one of the joys of writing fiction, being able to guarantee the result I want.

  3. Hey Nancy and welcome to TRC. First off have to say, LOVE the cover of your book, mmmmmm yummy!!!!! I’d read the book just for the cover alone 😉 Based on Sandy’s review it sounds like a book I can definitely get into and therefore added it to my list. Looking forward to checking Renegade out and thanks for sharing with us today in this wonderful interview. Being half Italian I have to agree with your fav food. 😉

    • Thank you, Marcie! I love my book cover, too. *g* I appreciate your ordering the book, and I hope you like it.

      There’s a restaurant near us that serves tiramisu as big as my face (not quite, really but close!) , and we always go there for my birthday dinner.

  4. Great interview, Nancy and Sandy!

    This book’s release is one I’ve really been looking forward to. I get a bit leery of futuristic stories if the world and language are too complicate. I’m afraid it’ll be too much for my tiny brain LOL.

    How did you approach your world building for THE RENEGADE, Nancy?

    • Thanks, Jo! I do have worldbuilding, but it isn’t futuristic. I have great faith in your brain. 🙂

      Several things went into the worldbuilding. Having grown up reading about superheroes who kept their identities secret, I figured mages would do the same. If there were a lot of them, as I wanted so as to have room for a series, then they would have some kind of governing body and some method for learning magic as well as policing its use.

      The magic itself comes from folklore and Wiccan tradition in that it’s very much nature-based. Some mages have affinities for earth, air, fire, water, or spirit, but those affinities have weakened over time. Most mages aren’t aware of being linked to any particular element.

      I also wanted to have limits on their powers because a hero with unlimited power should win in chapter 1, and then what would I do for the rest of the book? So they must periodically recharge by drawing in natural energy.

  5. Hi Nancy

    Thank you for the amazing answers to our questions. It is always fun to read what the author has to say. The interviews allow the reader get a little closer to the author behind the book.

    and…woot!!!!..another milk chocolate lover….lol

  6. Another wonderful interview ladies. I am looking forward to reading Renegade. It sounds like an amazing story,

    And I am a sucker for any type of pasta. 😉

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  8. Hey Nancy!!! Woohoo! Can’t wait to read RENEGADE! Some serious mage mojo goes on and I’m so excited for you!

    One question your host forgot to ask you: Who would you give your jewelry to if they needed it? 😀

    • Hi, Joan! Thank you! I hope you like it.

      Bwahahaha on the jewelry! I see where you’re going with this, and I think “need” would have to be defined very narrowly and in life-or-death terms.

      (FYI to everyone else, Jo and Joan are my blogmates at Romance Bandits, and Joan is famous for liking–some might say coveting–the accessories of her fellow bandits.)

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  10. Hi Nancy! Hi Reading Cafe Gals! I’m another of the rambunctious Romance Bandits. Nancy, I’m so glad you decided to join us – you’re the very model of a modern romance band-an-dit! Congratulations on the release of RENEGADE!!! So excited about this. It sounds fantastic. Any plans at this stage to indie publish your historicals? They sound great!

    • Hi, Anna–Thanks for the “very model” paraphrase! I love The Pirates of Penzance.

      Thanks also for the congrats. I hope you enjoy the book. As for the historicals, I have no indie plans at the moment. My horizon is pretty much filled with mages just now. I have the historicals in mind, though.

      The two Restoration books are connected. I have plot outlines for two more books connected to the historical fantasy, and for two connecting with the medieval. What I’d like to do is have sets of three connected books, minimum, in each series and bring them out fairly close together. That will require more writing and some advance planning, but thanks for asking!

  11. Great interview ladies!! Thanks, Nancy, for letting us get to know a bit about you. Love the premise of your books and look forward to reading it!!!

    And, all kneel for milk chocolate!! LOL!!!

  12. Great interview Sandy and Nancy… and this sounds like my kind of book… 😀 Alright, I know it is an addiction… but healthier than cigarettes and drugs. Support from those around you can be invaluable… you are lucky to have a partner that doesn’t try to sneak out of the house when you say the words… “What do you think of this?” or “You want to listen to this?”

    • Mary Ann, thanks! I hope you’ll like Renegade. I completely agree about the book addiction. We’re unlikely ever to have empty bookshelves.

      I realize I’m lucky with the dh. He reads for me, though he wasn’t exactly eager at first. “I don’t know anything about romance,” he said.
      “But you do know when something doesn’t make sense or is contradictory or no guy in his right mind would say that, right?” I replied.

      We had this conversation a few times before we landed on the same wavelength.

  13. What a fabulous interview, Nancy and Reading Cafe! Nancy, I love the sounds of your series, and can’t wait to pick it up! Do you have a rough timeline for when we might be able to see the rest of the series? 🙂

    f dot chen at comcast dot net

    • Fedora, thank you! I hope the book lives up to expectations. Aside from the novella, Protector, and the next novel, Guardian, both in the spring of 2013, I don’t have definite dates. When I do, I’ll post the info on my website.

  14. Congrats on the release of Renegade Nancy! I enjoyed the review and the chance to learn more about your new book. It sounds fantastic and I’m looking forward to reading it.

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